What is the Best Car Insurance for a Family?
Like other major cost-of-living expenses, car insurance for a family can really do a number on the wallet. Whether you’re getting married, buying a house, or adding teen drivers to your policy, each step in your family’s journey can affect the price you’ll pay for insurance each month. Understanding how your changing family dynamic can affect your premium is crucial, but so is knowing the best ways to drop your rates. And here’s the good news: we’ve done all that research for you.
Want to keep your family auto insurance rates under control? Stick with us as we break down the most affordable picks and share some secret tips that can drop your rates for good.
Life Events That Can Save You Money
Good news, married folks. Having a spouse doesn’t necessarily make you a better driver, but insurers tend to view spouses who share an auto insurance policy as less of a risk on the road. As a result, they reward married drivers with lower premiums. In fact, spouses save an average of $160 per year compared to single, unmarried motorists.
Insurance companies also look more kindly upon homeowners and condo owners than renters, offering an average savings of 2% off their premiums. That’s because homeowners are seen as less likely to file a claim than renters — and when they do file claims, the payouts tend to be less expensive.
So what does that mean for you? If you’ve recently purchased a new home or condo, you’ll want to let your current insurer know, because you might be in store for some extra savings. You may also want to check with other providers to see who gives the biggest discount to homeowners—and make a switch for the best deal.
Now that you know which life changes can drop your auto insurance rates, it’s time to cover the ones that increase your premiums. And here’s a hint: it all starts once you add kids to the equation.
Best Car Insurance Companies for Young Drivers
For a teenager, there’s nothing like the feeling of getting a driver’s license. But that newfound independence comes at a price—literally. Because of their lack of driving experience, younger drivers are more likely to be in an accident, and therefore more likely to be in an accident. That’s why teens are more expensive to insure than nearly any age group, paying an average of 80% more than older drivers.
Parents can expect a premium increase of as much as $4,000 per year after adding a teen driver to their car insurance policy. For families with multiple driving-aged children, the increase may be even greater. But car insurance for teens doesn’t have to break the bank.
The first step to slashing your rates for an affordable policy is choosing the right insurance provider:
- Travelers: Travelers has been a trusted provider of all types of insurance for 150 years. It also takes the cake for having the least expensive rates for teen drivers, at an annual rate of $1,314. Besides being the most affordable car insurance for families with teen drivers, it’s known for having plenty of coverage options. Travelers also offers multiple discounts for young drivers, including good student, driver training, and away-at-school discounts, which can drop rates even further.
- USAA: Just behind Travelers, USAA also boasts some of the least expensive rates for teen drivers, with an average rate of $1,595 per year. The only caveat is that USAA’s car insurance is only available to military members and their immediate families, so it may not be an option for everyone. However, service members are also eligible for special incentives to drop costs even further. These include discounts for teens who get good grades or complete a driver training course, as well as discounts for long-term customers.
- Progressive: It should come as no surprise that well-known insurance company Progressive offers low rates for teen drivers, sliding in third place with an annual rate of $1,835. The insurance giant doesn’t receive as high marks for customer service and claims handling as our top two picks, Travelers and USAA, but it does offer a variety of coverage options. Teen drivers can also qualify for its teen driver, good student, and distant student discounts to help further offset premium costs.
- State Farm: State Farm isn’t just the largest car insurance company in the country—it’s also a great option for families with younger drivers. Typical policy rates run at an average of $1,896 per year, making State Farm the fourth most affordable if you have teen drivers on your policy. It also provides tailored discounts to help ease rates even further. Full-time high school, homeschool, or college students can save as much as 25% with State Farm’s good student discount. Young drivers may also qualify for driver training and student away at school discounts.
- The Hartford: Last up on the list of most affordable insurance companies for teen drivers is The Hartford insurance company, which boasts an annual rate of $2,116. The Hartford is well known for its discounted AARP auto insurance program, which means that young drivers who share a policy with an AARP member can save even more on their premium.
How to Save Money on Car Insurance with Teen Drivers
The good news is that as your teenage driver gains more experience behind the wheel and avoids tickets and accidents, the price for their insurance should continue to decrease. Car insurance rates tend to drop by an average of 13% once a driver turns 19 and another 7% once they reach 21. In the meantime, here are some simple ways to keep your premiums under control:
- Increase your deductible: When you increase your deductible, you are agreeing to pay more up front in the event of a claim. In return, the insurance company will lower your monthly rate, often substantially. Keep in mind that increasing your deductible is a smart way to reduce your costs right away, but you’ll need to have enough money saved up to cover the deductible in the event of an accident.
- Bundle your policies: Using one insurance provider for both your car insurance and your homeowners insurance is called bundling–and it can result in considerable savings. Some carriers may also offer savings for bundling a car policy with boat, RV, motorcycle, renters or life insurance.
- Reevaluate your coverage needs: Check your policy to see if and where you can cut back on coverage. For example, if you have an older car, you might consider dropping collision coverage. Collision coverage pays for your repairs if you get into an accident, regardless of who was at fault. For an older car that isn’t worth that much, it might not make sense to pay hundreds of dollars for a collision premium, especially since you’ll still have to pay a deductible if you make a claim.
- Take a defensive driving class: Completing a defensive driving class either in person or online can often lower your rate by as much as 10-15%. Ask your provider about approved driving classes that will earn you a discount each month.
- Shop around for coverage: Car insurance premiums vary by company, state, and even neighborhood. This makes it important to compare quotes each year to ensure that you’re getting the best rate possible.
Affordable Car Insurance for the Whole Family
When it comes to car insurance for the family, a comprehensive policy is the first step in making sure your loved ones are protected. But affordability matters, too—and we’re here to make sure your coverage provides both. Thanks to our fast and affordable online auto insurance quotes, you can choose a plan and have the whole family safely insured in just minutes. Get your quote today to get the protection and the savings your family deserves.